Recently, I interviewed Nicholas Gullo, the Lead Technician at Tiger Direct in Vernon Hills, IL. Because of his background and unique skill set working in retail at Tiger Direct, thought he could provide an interesting perspective to those interested in IT retail and technical support.
How would you describe your ideal day?
perfect work day for me would be having multiple projects to do, and
infinite amount of time to get them done, and a guarantee of not having
any interruptions. In a retail environment, time is always against you,
and interruptions are inevitable. This makes my ideal work day a total
fantasy. But it's nice to dream.
What are some challenges involved in your position that are unknown to your coworkers?
think the main challenge that I deal with here that others may take for
granted is the ability to manage and complete multiple tasks at the
same, while also assisting customers and keeping the other technicians
and service advisors equally focused. There is always going to be
deadlines on our work so keeping up with it is very important. We pride
ourselves on having a very fast turnaround on checked-in computers, so
it's always a struggle to make sure that all work is done on time, is
done properly, and the customers are contacted in a timely fashion.
What is your job title? How would you describe it to someone unfamiliar with technology?
job title is Lead Technician. For someone not familiar with what I do,
my position is basically acting as the right hand of the Technical
Services Supervisor, and aiding in the day-to-day running of the
department. I am also totally in-charge of the department when the
Technical Services Supervisor is not on-duty, or when he is occupied
with other tasks outside of the department.
What is your best approach to stay on top of technology?
Internet is by far the best way to stay on the cutting edge of
technology news. There are thousands of websites dedicated to the latest
and greatest technology news and information. Magazines can also
sometimes be a good source, but usually the news is already rather
out-of-date by the time the magazine actually makes it to newsstands.
Staying on top of things is very important in this line of work, as it
makes you much more credible to the consumer.
What are three technology areas that you have expertise in that make you qualified for this role? Please explain.
don't know if there are any particular areas that are especially
helpful since so many areas in technology overlap each other. I would
probably say that besides the basic computer knowledge (hardware and
software), that knowledge of computer networking and security principles
is very important. Another area that I frequently receive questions
about is the computer's ability to connect to a television, and how to
stream media across different devices.
Do you spend more time with internal or external clients?
spend all of my time with the customers who come into the store needing
service. Although we do offer in-home services, it is not my job to
perform that work, as we do have other technicians who can do that for
What are some myths or exaggerations of technology that you wish to dispel?
thing that I am frequently asked is why I can't recover files from a
customer's hard drive disk, or also why hard disk drives are so prone to
failure over time. Also, you cannot easily convert USB to FireWire, no
matter how much you want to. I'd be happy if I was never asked that
From my experiences, what are some of the more difficult technology challenges for clients?
of the most difficult challenges for customers would be understanding
the way that Windows stores files, and where to go to access their
files. Tying directly into that is also the backup and recovery of
files, and how the process works.
Do you have any biases toward certain technology companies? If so, does it matter if you have biases toward certain companies?
absolutely do. There are some companies whose products I would never
willingly sell to anyone, regardless of what they need or want. On the
other hand, there are products from companies that I will always sell
over any others.
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